Mises Daily Articles
Socialist Man in the Big Easy
Marxists long theorized that communism would bring about the new socialist man. Through communist programs, man would turn his sole purpose to laboring and struggling for the greater good of the collective.
Through socialist policies and redistribution, New Orleans has raised from its ruin a new socialist man. However, instead of working for the collective, this risen New Orleans man does not work at all. He does not live for the collective but lives at the expense of the collective. This reality is drastically different from what Marxists had in mind when referring to the man created from socialism.
To a person with common sense, this seems like an obvious outcome. If you give money to those who stay unemployed, you are not teaching them to work. Rather, you are teaching them how to survive without working.
Let's begin with the supposed housing shortage in New Orleans. The government is giving more and more trailers to the citizens of the city. Even the officials of the city constantly talk about the "housing shortage." Every New Orleanian knows differently.
A simple look at Craigslist.orgreveals the plentitude of homes available in the area. These are houses available for rent on just one website which hardly represents all rentable properties in New Orleans.
If there are houses available, why do people still request trailers? It's really simple. Free is always better. Sure, there are homes available but who wants to pay when they don't have to. The government interprets this demand as a housing shortage. At price zero, demand is as much as people want. The realities of availability are thrown to the side so that these bureaucrats can get even more money to bribe disgruntled voters with free trailers calling the problem a "housing shortage."
Personally, I know people who were renting an apartment, and then received a trailer from the government. Their next step was to move out of the apartment. Their problem was not finding a place or even paying rent. But as I said, free is always better especially when someone else foots the bill.
Now the next issue is jobs. We all know that jobs are plentiful in New Orleans and are paying outstanding wages. Recently, I saw Taco Bell in Slidell hiring at $11/hour. Here's another list of jobsavailable to low-skilled workers in New Orleans from Craig's List.
Why is the murder rate for July in New Orleans higher than last year with half the population around? These jobs are available with great wages! Living wage advocates always talk about how everything would be solved when wages for low skilled labor were around $10-15/hour. Well, here we have it leftists! Take a big look. The wages are at the living wage rate, yet employers are desperate to find employees. Anyone who applies for a job is often hired on the spot before the entire application is even filled out.
In the face of these opportunities, the crime rate grows. Conservatives and libertarians are often accused of having a vicious and maligned view of the poor on welfare as lazy. I don't think that welfare recipients of New Orleans are naturally lazy, but I believe that our socialist policies have made them so. People simply don't want to work anymore. They would rather do nothing and live on barely anything than consider work.
Can a left-liberal please e-mail me with their reasoning on why these people are committing crime instead of working when there are countless jobs at outstanding wages? The living wage is here. Dare to look at the situation! People are still not working. It's not the wage that must be changed. It is the mindset of people that must be altered or these problems will persist. The welfare culture must be abolished for the good of everyone in this country. If this is not done, crime and murder will continue in the face of high wages, as has been happening in the Big Easy.
The accelerated rate in transfer payments to Katrina victims has resulted in an accelerated rate of crime not just in New Orleans but in Houston and Jackson, Mississippi as well. If you want to help the poor, don't start by talking about higher wages. Start by talking about the welfare system and its effects. New Orleans has shown that high wages and job opportunities are not enough in the face of a subsidized mentality of redistributionist policies.
The welfare state must be destroyed to begin the process of change. New Orleans has shown that high wages and plentiful job opportunities are not enough. Every piece of the coercive redistributionist regime must be taken apart. Decades of welfare have created this new socialist man of New Orleans. Stripping welfare is the only solution as market-driven wages are not enough to return society back to its natural order.